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UN Security Council puts reliable barrier to new chemical attacks in Syria — diplomat

August 07, 2015, 17:23 UTC+3
Russia hopes that a joint investigative mission, being set up by the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) will do its work in a professionally and unbiased manner
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Vitaly Churkin, the Russian ambassador to the UN

Vitaly Churkin, the Russian ambassador to the UN

© AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

UNITED NATIONS, August 7. /TASS/. UN Security Council that has adopted a resolution on exposing those guilty of chemical attacks in Syria has put up a powerful barrier to the repetition of such incidents in that country, Vitaly Churkin, the Russian ambassador to the UN said on Friday.

"We proceed for the assumption today's decision has a preventive character, in the first place, and it will put up a reliable barrier to the use of toxic chemicals as a weapon in Syria in the future," he said.

Russia hopes that a joint investigative mission, being set up by the UN and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) will do its work in professionally and in an unbiased manner, Churkin said.

He recalled a specialize fact-finding mission got down to work in Syria under the OPCW auspices in spring 2014 and it stated with a big degree of confidence that chlorine had been used as a weapon in a number of population centers there.

Churkin stressed Russia’s resolute condemnation of such actions.

"We act on the presumption of their inadmissibility and contradiction to the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons," he said.

"But the question of who used chlorine in the battleground remains unanswered," Churkin said. He recalled that the existing UN and OPCW formats did not have a mandate for tracking down the people involved in these crimes.

"It was important to eliminate this blank spot and it was eliminated with the adoption of today’s resolution that laid the groundwork for launching the joint investigative mission," Churkin said.

Given the specific military and political layout in Syria, it is essential for the mission to build its relations within the country correctly, he said. "I’m confident Damascus will continue giving the missions the needed assistance in establishing the facts of chlorine utilization as a chemical weapon like it did previously - and this was proved in the documents of both the UN and the OPCW ."

"We expect the Syrian opposition to act in the same vein," Churkin said.

Resolution 2235 the UN Security Council passed on Friday says the UN Secretary General will submit recommendations on the staffing and powers of the joint mission and the Security Council will be expected to endorse them.

The document says the experts will not only expose the personalities who utilized chemical weapons but everyone who might have been involved in those offences in one way or another/.

The mission will be expected to submit its first report in 90 days’ time after the start of its activity.

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